August 2020 Employments Law and Regulations Update
Welcome back to the Reflexis Employment Law and Regulations Update! In this month’s article, we’ve included notable changes in United States regulations from August 2020 onward.
This list of new laws and regulations is not exhaustive, nor is it intended as legal advice. Reflexis strongly recommends you consult with your legal counsel regarding any substantive employment law and regulation changes that may affect your organization.
Readers should check for any newer developments on COVID-19 regulations at state and local levels.
Effective August 1, 2020
In an amendment to the School Visitation Rights Act, employers must grant employees up to a total of 8 hours during any school year, and up to 4 hours of which may be taken on any given day, to attend school conferences, behavioral meetings, or academic meetings related to the employee’s child if the conference or meeting cannot be scheduled during nonwork hours.
Effective August 7, 2020
US Department of Labor issued Final Rule on the Fluctuating Workweek Method of Computing Overtime under 29 CFR 778.114. Employers are permitted to pay bonuses and other incentive pay to salaried, non-exempt employees whose pay is calculated on a fluctuating workweek basis. The bonuses or other incentive pay must still be included in the calculation of the regular rate of pay for overtime purposes.
Effective September 30, 2020
Employees will be entitled to accrue sick leave at a rate of 1 hour for every 30 hours worked, up to the following caps:
- Employees who work for employers with (a) fewer than 5 employees in a calendar year and (b) annual net income of less than $1 Million, accrue up to 40 hours of unpaid sick leave in each calendar year.
- Employees who work for employers with (a) fewer than 5 employees in a calendar year and (b) annual net income of greater than $1 Million accrue up to 40 hours of paid sick leave in each calendar year.
- Employees who work for employers with 5 or more employees, but less than 100 employees, up to 40 hours of paid sick leave in each calendar year.
- Employees who work for employers with 100 or more employees, accrue up to 56 hours of paid sick leave in each calendar year.
Employers can provide the annual cap amounts as a lump sum at the beginning of a calendar year, rather than keeping track of accruals throughout the year.
Up to 40 hours of accrued time must be permitted to be carried over from one year to the next. Accrued but unused time does not need to be paid out upon termination of employment.
Accruals begin on September 30, 2020, and accrued time can be used by employee starting on January 1, 2021.
Effective October 1, 2020
Under an amendment to the Economic Stabilization Act, employers who operate industrial, commercial and business enterprises in Maryland who employee 50 or more employees, who are undergoing a “reduction in operations” are now required to provide:
- 60 days’ advance written notice to all employees affected by the reduction in operations, each, and exclusive representative or bargaining unit, the Division of Workforce Development’s dislocated worker unit and all elected officials in the jurisdiction where the reduction in operations will occur; and
- Continued benefits, including health insurance, severance and benefits (details to be set forth in regulations to be issued by the state secretary of labor).
A “reduction in operations” is a relocation or shutdown of the workplace or a part of an employer’s operations that results in a reduction of the number of employees by 25% or 15 employees, whichever is greater, over any three (3)-month period.
New Mexico – Bernalillo County
The Employee Wellness Act entitles employees to accrue a minimum of one hour of earned time off for every 32 hours worked, up to a cap of 24 hours of earned paid time off in a year. The cap increases to 40 hours on October 1, 2021, and to 56 hours on October 1, 2022. Accrual commences on the employee’s 90th day of employment, or immediately for employees who have already been employed for 90 days with the employer. Exempt employees will be deemed to have worked 40 hours in each work week for purposes of earned paid time off accrual.
Unused accrued earned paid time shall be carried over to the following year, up to the annual accrual cap.
Earned paid time may be used for any use, but cannot be used until the employee has worked 56 hours in the applicable earned paid time benefit year.
Employers are required to provide notice about earned paid time to the employee upon commencement of employment and are prohibited from retaliating against an employee for using earned paid time or for having alleged in good faith a violation of the ordinance.
Pregnancy Workers’ Fairness Act required employers with 15 or more employees to make reasonable accommodation for medical needs arising from pregnancy, childbirth related medical conditions of an applicant or employee, unless the employer demonstrated that the accommodation would pose an undue hardship in the employer’s business.
Effective October 29, 2020
Employers are required to provide notice to current employees of the prohibition of discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions and the right to reasonable accommodation for pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions.
Effective January 1, 2021
Paid Family Leave will also be available for employees for who need to take time off due to a “qualifying exigency related to the covered active duty or call to covered active duty of the individual’s spouse, domestic partner, child, or parent in the Armed Forces of the United States.”
Equal Pay for Equal Work Act prohibits:
- Different pay based on sex (including gender identity) of the worker;
- Seeking salary history of a job candidate or requiring disclosure of a job candidate’s wage rate as a condition of employment;
- Discrimination or retaliation against an employee for asserting rights under the Act;
- Discriminating, retaliating or disciplining an employee for inquiring about, disclosing or discussing the employee’s own wage rate, or interfering with an employee’s inquiring about, disclosing or discussing the employee’s own wage rate.
Employers must maintain a record of job descriptions and wage rate history for each employee while employed and for 2 years after.
Employers are required to start collecting payroll deductions for paid family and medical leave benefits. Amounts to be withheld are likely to change before January 1, 2021, as rules and regulations for CPFML are being developed.
Sunday and holiday premium pay rate decreases to 1.2 times the employee’s regular hourly rate of pay.
Employers with at least 10 employees who work more than 120 hours in a calendar year are required to allow employees to earn up to 40 hours of paid leave time annually, at a rate of 1 hour of paid leave for every 40 hours worked. Employees being accruing paid leave upon commencement of employment, and are allowed to use accrued paid leave after 120 days of employment. During the leave, the employee must be paid the same base rate they were receiving prior to the leave and receive the same benefits provided to employees taking other types of paid leave.
This does not apply to seasonal employees or employees subject to a collective bargaining agreement.
Employees may begin using accrued sick time.
PA – Philadelphia
The Philadelphia Fair Workweek ordinance requires notice of work schedules to employees 14 days in advance of their scheduled work (change from 10 days’ advance notice).
To learn more, stay tuned for the update in May! Visit www.reflexisinc.com for more information on how Reflexis can help you increase compliance rates and stay on top of new labor laws and regulations.
Effective March 15, 2021
PA – Pittsburgh
Paid Sick Days’ Act requires employers with 14 or fewer employees to allow full-time and part-time employees who work in Pittsburgh 35 or more hours in a year to accrue 1 hour of paid sick leave for every 35 hours worked, up to a maximum of 24 hours in a year. Employees must be allowed to carryover up to 24 hours of accrued paid sick leave from one calendar year to the next. Employers are not required to pay out any accrued, but unused, paid sick leave upon terminating an employee or upon the employee’s resignation. The Paid Sick Days’ Act does not apply to seasonal employees who are notified in writing upon hire that they will work no more than 16 weeks during the calendar year.
Effective July 1, 2021
Eligible employees may receive Paid Family and Medical Leave benefits to bond with a new child, address needs relating to a family member who is a covered service member of the armed forces, and for the employee’s own serious medical condition.
To learn more, stay tuned for the update in September! Visit www.reflexisinc.com for more information on how Reflexis can help you increase compliance rates and stay on top of new labor laws and regulations.